New graphic photos have been released by Sky News showing the bloody aftermath of the South African house where Reeva Steenkamp was fatally shot on Valentine’s Day by her boyfriend Oscar Pistorius, the famous double amputee Paralympian sprinter. One such photo (as seen below) shows the bloodstained bathroom where Steenkamp was shot and the police marked bullet holes on the bathroom door.
The state has charged Pistorius with premeditated murder, claiming that Steenkamp had gone to the bathroom to hide after a fight between the couple. The crime is being called premeditated because prosecutors allege that Pistorius had taken the time to put on his prosthetic legs before heading to the bathroom to murder Steenkamp.
However, according to Pistorius and his defense attorneys, Steenkamp’s death was the result of a terrible accident. The sprinter says that after hearing a noise in his house, he ran on his stumps to the bathroom and shot through the bathroom door four times. The position of the bullet holes and angle of shooting has been the main crux of each side’s argument. On one hand, the prosecution claims Pistorius was on his prosthetics and shot from a higher angle. On the other hand, the defense argues that Pistorius was running on his stumps, accounting for the low position of the bullet holes on the door and a lower shooting angle.
The prosecution’s case has been severely damaged due to poor handling and scandals by police investigators. Hilton Botha, the original lead investigator, was removed from the case after admitting during Pistorius’ bail hearing that he the police had failed to wear protective shoe covers at the crime scene, potentially contaminating the evidence. Botha himself is also facing seven accounts of attempted murder. Officers surrounding the investigation are being investigated themselves after the disappearance of one of Pistorius’ watches from his house. This poor police work will make it harder for the prosecution to use evidence from the initial investigation in their case against Pistorius.
Pistorius is due in court again on Tuesday for a brief hearing where prosecutors are expected to ask for a delay in court pending further investigation. These leaked photos have the potential to postpone the case even further.
The most heart-wrenching of all the photos released was one of a wrapped Valentine's gift from Steenkamp with a card on top marked with hearts and one word: Ozzy, her nickname for Pistorius.